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Study: Exxon Deliberately Confused Public on Global Warming

A new report from the Union of Concerned Scientists claims that ExxonMobil used disinformation tactics to cloud the scientific understanding of climate change and delay action on the issue. According to the report, ExxonMobil has funneled nearly $16 million between 1998 and 2005 to a network of 43 advocacy organizations that seek to confuse the public on global warming science.

“ExxonMobil has manufactured uncertainty about the human causes of global warming just as tobacco companies denied their product caused lung cancer,” said Alden Meyer, the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Director of Strategy & Policy. “A modest but effective investment has allowed the oil giant to fuel doubt about global warming to delay government action just as Big Tobacco did for over 40 years.”

According to the report, ExxonMobil has used the laudable goal of improving scientific understanding of global warming – under the guise of “sound science” – to delay action to reduce heat-trapping emissions indefinitely. ExxonMobil also exerted unprecedented influence over U.S. policy on global warming, from successfully recommending the appointment of key personnel in the Bush administration to funding climate change deniers in Congress.

“ExxonMobil needs to be held accountable for its cynical disinformation campaign on global warming,” said Meyer.  “Consumers, shareholders and Congress should let the company know loud and clear that its behavior on this issue is unacceptable and must change.”

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